Wunderground launches new Local Climate Change section

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 6:10 PM GMT on April 20, 2012

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In honor of Earth Day on Sunday, wunderground has launched a new Climate Change Center, which gives people resources to understand how the climate is changing both globally and in their local neighborhoods. I am particularly pleased with our Local Climate Change feature, which allows one to see how temperature and precipitation have changed over the past 100+ years at the nearest station with a long period of measurements. Predictions from climate models on what the next 100 years may bring are overlaid for each station. Data for most U.S. stations goes back to 1895; we have data for a few stations in Europe that extend back to the 1700s. Berlin has the longest period of record in this database, with data back to 1702.


Figure 1. Screenshot of the Local Climate Change page for Washington, DC. Measured temperatures since 1820 are shown in grey. By clicking on the "Show post-1900 trend:" box, we see that the trend since 1900 has been for an increase in temperature of 1.5°C (2.7°F) per century. Moving the thin vertical red line over the image using the mouse shows that the warmest year on record in Washington D.C. was 1991. Predictions for a future with low emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide are shown in yellow; the high emissions prediction is shown in red. Separate tabs are available to examine precipitation and snow.

Skeptical?
Also included in the new Climate Change Center is a section addressing the common skeptical arguments made against climate change. We offer three levels of explanation. The "Basic" level is the default, but one can also see more technical in-depth discussions by clicking on the "See All Explanation Levels" link. The material was developed by physicist John Cook for his excellent skepticalscience.com web site, which is widely referenced in the climate science communication community.


Video 1. I'm featured in this video on extreme weather and climate change done by veteran videographer Peter Sinclair for the Yale forum on Climate Change and the Media this month. I'm also featured in Part 1 of this series. Our new Climate Change Center has a section for climate change videos, which includes a twice-monthly feature from GreenTV detailing the world's notable wild weather events of the past two weeks.

Earth: the Operator's Manual airs Sunday night
Penn State climate scientist Dr. Richard Alley hosts parts II and III of Earth: the Operator's Manual on PBS beginning at 7pm Sunday, April 22--Earth Day. Part I of this excellent series aired in April 2011. The series gives an overview of climate change, but primarily focuses on what we can do to help slow down climate change though smart energy choices. Dr. Alley, a registered Republican, geologist, and former oil company employee, is the Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences at the Pennsylvania State University, and one of the most respected and widely published world experts on climate change. Dr. Alley has testified before Congress on climate change issues, served as lead author of "Chapter 4: Observations: Changes in Snow, Ice and Frozen Ground" for the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and is author of more than 170 peer-reviewed scientific articles on Earth's climate. He is also the author of a book I highly recommend--The Two Mile Time Machine, a superb account of Earth's climate history as deduced from the 2-mile long Greenland ice cores. Dr. Alley is an excellent and engaging speaker, and I highly recommend listening to his 45-minute keynote speech, "The Biggest Control Knob: CO2 in Earth's Climate History", given at the 2010 American Geophysical Union meeting, via this very watchable recording showing his slides as he speaks in one corner of the video. If you want to understand why scientists are so certain of the link between CO2 and Earth's climate, this is a must-see lecture.

Have a great weekend, everyone, and I'll be back Monday with a new post. I'd like to thank Wunderground meteorologist, Angela Fritz for spearheading the creating the new Climate Change Center; it's a product I'll be referring to frequently in the future, and one we'll be updating in the coming months with data on local sea level rise, fire risk, and drought.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Jedkins01:


bowing is an indication of potentially damaging straight line winds


I can see the shelf cloud approaching with some lightning flashes, still not nearly as much lightning as earlier, but severe none the less apparently.


Just saw a TVS pop up just off the coast up there. Stay safe.
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1219. Skyepony (Mod)
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Quoting Littleninjagrl:


what does it mean when its bowing? sorry...stupid question i know.


Normally when you have a line segment bow it's an indication of strong straight line winds within the line.
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
Quoting Littleninjagrl:


what does it mean when its bowing? sorry...stupid question i know.


bowing is an indication of potentially damaging straight line winds


I can see the shelf cloud approaching with some lightning flashes, still not nearly as much lightning as earlier, but severe none the less apparently.
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1216. wxmod

The ships are headin out to sea. They're spraying whitener. It will change the solar reflectance and make the storm split, sending water to LA, Phoenix, Las Vegas. Only one problem. It will make you sick and downwind, who knows what will happen to the rest of the world. Who cares!



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1215. nigel20
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Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10975
Quoting charlottefl:
That line segment up near you is bowing now...


what does it mean when its bowing? sorry...stupid question i know.
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Quite a gust front showing up on my GRAnalyst.... Wow strong winds inbound!
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1211. Skyepony (Mod)
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Well folks the mystery is solved, the squall line/severe weather threat did indeed happen. Stay safe out there.
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That line segment up near you is bowing now...
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31460
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
FLC053-057-101-103-220400-
/O.NEW.KTBW.SV.W.0004.120422T0312Z-120422T0400Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAMPA BAY AREA - RUSKIN FL
1112 PM EDT SAT APR 21 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RUSKIN HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
WESTERN HERNANDO COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
NORTHWESTERN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
WESTERN PASCO COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
PINELLAS COUNTY IN FLORIDA.

* UNTIL MIDNIGHT EDT

* AT 1103 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
LINE OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WINDS IN
EXCESS OF 60 MPH. THESE STORMS WERE LOCATED ALONG A LINE EXTENDING
FROM 21 MILES WEST OF HUDSON TO 14 MILES WEST OF INDIAN ROCKS
BEACH...OR ALONG A LINE EXTENDING FROM 21 MILES WEST OF HUDSON TO
18 MILES WEST OF SEMINOLE...AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 30 MPH.

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE NEAR...
SEMINOLE.
LARGO.
PINELLAS PARK.
PORT RICHEY.
NEW PORT RICHEY.
OLDSMAR.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE WARNED AREA. IF A TORNADO
IS SPOTTED...ACT QUICKLY AND MOVE TO A PLACE OF SAFETY IN A STURDY
STRUCTURE...SUCH AS A BASEMENT OR SMALL INTERIOR ROOM.

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 700 AM EDT SUNDAY MORNING FOR
SOUTHWESTERN FLORIDA.

&&

LAT...LON 2822 8285 2819 8283 2822 8278 2844 8268
2866 8269 2866 8246 2793 8254 2796 8266
2798 8262 2800 8264 2795 8271 2784 8255
2780 8281 2791 8286 2808 8285 2806 8279
2813 8279 2818 8282 2817 8286 2821 8286
TIME...MOT...LOC 0312Z 240DEG 27KT 2849 8295 2790 8301




I guess I spoke too soon, this includes me, its weird though, reflectivity and lightning is continuing to slowly decrease with the line. I'm actually surprised there is a warning given the current weakening trend, maybe they know something I don't it might be do to cold air aloft coming down to the surface.
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Quoting Jedkins01:


It does, but I still say its weakening some, I should get good rain, gusty winds, maybe small hail, and lightning. There is a chance of severe weather but its pretty low due to still pretty stable air at the surface, instability is mainly elevated so getting actual severe winds to the surface or a tornado will be hard. We shall see. If this line ramps up more as it hits the coast then I'll be more worried about severe weather.

I'm not saying its falling apart but it isn't looking quite as intense over the last 30 to 40 minutes as it was the last 2 hours. Its still a formidable line though.


You do realize your under a Severe Storm Warning?
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7340

The National Weather Service has issued Tornado Watch 186 in
effect until 7 am EDT Sunday for the following areas

In Florida this watch includes 14 counties

In southwest Florida

Charlotte Lee

In west central Florida

Citrus DeSoto Hardee
Hernando Highlands Hillsborough
Manatee Pasco Pinellas
Polk Sarasota Sumter

This includes the cities of... Arcadia... Avon Park... Bradenton...
Brandon... Brooksville... Bushnell... Cape Coral... Clearwater...
Crystal River... Fort Myers... Inverness... Lakeland...
New Port Richey... North Port... Port Charlotte... Punta Gorda...
Sarasota... Sebring... Spring Hill... St. Petersburg... Tampa...
the villages... Venice... Wauchula... Winter Haven and Zephyrhills.
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
Stay safe all tonight in Florida
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Here we go!
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7340
Quoting charlottefl:
Jed, shouldn't be too far offshore from you now. That line looks pretty intense.


It does, but I still say its weakening some, I should get good rain, gusty winds, maybe small hail, and lightning. There is a chance of severe weather but its pretty low due to still pretty stable air at the surface, instability is mainly elevated so getting actual severe winds to the surface or a tornado will be hard. We shall see. If this line ramps up more as it hits the coast then I'll be more worried about severe weather.

I'm not saying its falling apart but it isn't looking quite as intense over the last 30 to 40 minutes as it was the last 2 hours. Its still a formidable line though.
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Tornado watch just issued for central and southern Florida.
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Quoting charlottefl:
Jed, shouldn't be too far offshore from you now. That line looks pretty intense.


Yes, rotation signatures in it too.

And yes Jed, I notice the complex behind this line, with lightning and probably hail in that (it is right in the heart of the cold air pool aloft).
Member Since: October 15, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 715
BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAMPA BAY AREA - RUSKIN FL
1112 PM EDT SAT APR 21 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RUSKIN HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
WESTERN HERNANDO COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
NORTHWESTERN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
WESTERN PASCO COUNTY IN FLORIDA.
PINELLAS COUNTY IN FLORIDA.

* UNTIL MIDNIGHT EDT

* AT 1103 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
LINE OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WINDS IN
EXCESS OF 60 MPH. THESE STORMS WERE LOCATED ALONG A LINE EXTENDING
FROM 21 MILES WEST OF HUDSON TO 14 MILES WEST OF INDIAN ROCKS
BEACH...OR ALONG A LINE EXTENDING FROM 21 MILES WEST OF HUDSON TO
18 MILES WEST OF SEMINOLE...AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 30 MPH.

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE NEAR...
SEMINOLE.
LARGO.
PINELLAS PARK.
PORT RICHEY.
NEW PORT RICHEY.
OLDSMAR.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE WARNED AREA. IF A TORNADO
IS SPOTTED...ACT QUICKLY AND MOVE TO A PLACE OF SAFETY IN A STURDY
STRUCTURE...SUCH AS A BASEMENT OR SMALL INTERIOR ROOM.

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 700 AM EDT SUNDAY MORNING FOR
SOUTHWESTERN FLORIDA.

&&

LAT...LON 2822 8285 2819 8283 2822 8278 2844 8268
2866 8269 2866 8246 2793 8254 2796 8266
2798 8262 2800 8264 2795 8271 2784 8255
2780 8281 2791 8286 2808 8285 2806 8279
2813 8279 2818 8282 2817 8286 2821 8286
TIME...MOT...LOC 0312Z 240DEG 27KT 2849 8295 2790 8301
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Quoting luvtogolf:


Definately not as strong as it was 40min ago. It was a solid line with deep reds and now it is more broken and not as defined. this sure seems to happen a lot off our coast.


Yeah....im going to bed. I think this is a DUD once again. good night all. Hope any of you that may get the bad weather stay safe.
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1197. nigel20
Quoting animalrsq:


Man, I spent weeks on that road at that time.

I'm sure that all the people that experience Ike would not want to experience anything similar....the damage was really extreme
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Jed, shouldn't be too far offshore from you now. That line looks pretty intense.
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Quoting Jedkins01:




The earth is curved and its even that much harder to see approaching weather at night, just watch the radar. That's what it is for, lol.


LOL yes....I looked. Dont think I will get much. Looks like North of me is gonna get some good rain.
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TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 186
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1110 PM EDT SAT APR 21 2012

TORNADO WATCH 186 IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 700 AM EDT FOR THE
FOLLOWING LOCATIONS

FLC009-011-015-017-021-027-043-049-051-053-055-05 7-061-071-081-
085-086-087-093-097-099-101-103-105-111-115-119-2 21100-
/O.NEW.KWNS.TO.A.0186.120422T0310Z-120422T1100Z/

FL
. FLORIDA COUNTIES INCLUDED ARE

BREVARD BROWARD CHARLOTTE
CITRUS COLLIER DESOTO
GLADES HARDEE HENDRY
HERNANDO HIGHLANDS HILLSBOROUGH
INDIAN RIVER LEE MANATEE
MARTIN MIAMI-DADE MONROE
OKEECHOBEE OSCEOLA PALM BEACH
PASCO PINELLAS POLK
SARASOTA ST. LUCIE SUMTER
$$

TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 186
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1110 PM EDT SAT APR 21 2012

TORNADO WATCH 186 IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 700 AM EDT FOR THE
FOLLOWING LOCATIONS

AMZ552-555-610-630-650-651-GMZ656-657-830-850-853 -856-221100-
/O.NEW.KWNS.TO.A.0186.120422T0310Z-120422T1100Z/

CW

. ADJACENT COASTAL WATERS INCLUDED ARE

VOLUSIA-BREVARD COUNTY LINE TO SEBASTIAN INLET 0-20 NM

SEBASTIAN INLET TO JUPITER INLET 0-20 NM

LAKE OKEECHOBEE

BISCAYNE BAY

COASTAL WATERS FROM JUPITER INLET TO DEERFIELD BEACH FL OUT 20 NM

COASTAL WATERS FROM DEERFIELD BEACH TO OCEAN REEF FL OUT 20 NM

COASTAL WATERS FROM CHOKOLOSKEE TO BONITA BEACH FL OUT 20 NM

COASTAL WATERS FROM EAST CAPE SABLE TO CHOKOLOSKEE FL OUT 20 NM

TAMPA BAY WATERS

COASTAL WATERS FROM TARPON SPRINGS TO SUWANNEE RIVER FL OUT 20 NM

COASTAL WATERS FROM ENGLEWOOD TO TARPON SPRINGS FL OUT 20 NM

COASTAL WATERS FROM BONITA BEACH TO ENGLEWOOD FL OUT 20 NM

$$
ATTN...WFO...MLB...TBW...MFL...KEY...
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Quoting charlottefl:
Local Met says he believes they'll hold together. I think the environment is becoming more favorable for intense storms. Doesn't mean they won't cycle in strength. All storms do eventually.


Definately not as strong as it was 40min ago. It was a solid line with deep reds and now it is more broken and not as defined. this sure seems to happen a lot off our coast.
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Quoting Littleninjagrl:
Our weather man just said "hold on to your hats cuz here it comes" I went outside and all i see are stars. What the heck?




The earth is curved and its even that much harder to see approaching weather at night, just watch the radar. That's what it is for, lol.
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Quoting nigel20:
Looking back at a couple pics from hurricane IKe and I really think the that storm surge should be a factor when rating hurricane categories


Man, I spent weeks on that road at that time.
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Local Met says he believes they'll hold together. I think the environment is becoming more favorable for intense storms. Doesn't mean they won't cycle in strength. All storms do eventually.
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Quoting FLWaterFront:


Is it really weakening? I think it did weaken, very briefly, but then it has started to regenerate again. I could be wrong though, it is a very fluid situation.

Notice that discreet cells are now rapidly developing and moving onshore in Pinellas County. That is because the dry slot finally came far enough east to clear the coast and is now dissipating over land.. I think. But clearly the atmosphere near the coast is moistening rapidly.

I think that vort max you mentioned is pushing into this thing from behind, possibly enough to simply sweep away all the former stability and cool air along the coast.

Another thing. I just went outside and counted 25 lightning flashes in 60 seconds. That is a rate of one every 2.4 seconds or so. Does not seem week to me, as many of these were clearly cloud to (water) surface as opposed to cloud to cloud.



Yeah that weakening I saw was temporary, I know that small cells are developing ahead of the line and feeding into it, showing that a well established low level jet has developed which should keep it strong as it moves in, as you noticed it also shows the dry iair is eroding.


Also, I want you too look at the long range radar, look closely and behind this line of storms approaching is an additional band of showers/storms and its racing east, that may be the additional push of energy as it it should normally be very stable in that area in the wake of the current line.


I only first wondered if it would hold together only cause of the stable layer, but it looks like its eroding.
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Our weather man just said "hold on to your hats cuz here it comes" I went outside and all i see are stars. What the heck?
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Those discreet storms developing well to the west of Lee, Charlotte and Sarasota counties have the look of super cells in the making, to me.
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Quoting FLWaterFront:


Is it really weakening? I think it did weaken, very briefly, but then it has started to regenerate again. I could be wrong though, it is a very fluid situation.

Notice that discreet cells are now rapidly developing and moving onshore in Pinellas County. That is because the dry slot finally came far enough east to clear the coast and is now dissipating over land.. I think. But clearly the atmosphere near the coast is moistening rapidly.

I think that vort max you mentioned is pushing into this thing from behind, possibly enough to simply sweep away all the former stability and cool air along the coast.

Another thing. I just went outside and counted 25 lightning flashes in 60 seconds. That is a rate of one every 2.4 seconds or so. Does not seem week to me, as many of these were clearly cloud to (water) surface as opposed to cloud to cloud.


there are more factors than just the atmosphere moistening
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Quoting Jedkins01:



The one fortunate thing is total energy available for these storms will be limited because early activity. If we had heating all day we would be talking about a scary severe threat. The SPC notes that while intense storms are headed towards Tampa Bay, its hard to say if there will be any severe winds making it to the surface, the upper low is producing elevated instability but the surface is still a bit sketchy.

We shall see, recent frames suggest the line has weakened slightly, probably due to more stable air near the coast, we'll see what happens. I'm not sure if strong storms will hold across the state though, its very stable in the eastern 2/3 of Florida.


One thing to note is there will be a boost of energy moving in from west overnight in the form of a vort max embedded in the main vort center of the low will rotate east across the gulf overnight, I'm not sure if its affecting the MCS or not yet though, we'll watch it and see if it ramps back up, it's not looking quite as strong as last hour.


Is it really weakening? I think it did weaken, very briefly, but then it has started to regenerate again. I could be wrong though, it is a very fluid situation.

Notice that discreet cells are now rapidly developing and moving onshore in Pinellas County. That is because the dry slot finally came far enough east to clear the coast and is now dissipating over land.. I think. But clearly the atmosphere near the coast is moistening rapidly.

I think that vort max you mentioned is pushing into this thing from behind, possibly enough to simply sweep away all the former stability and cool air along the coast.

Another thing. I just went outside and counted 25 lightning flashes in 60 seconds. That is a rate of one every 2.4 seconds or so. Does not seem week to me, as many of these were clearly cloud to (water) surface as opposed to cloud to cloud.
Member Since: October 15, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 715


THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RUSKIN HAS ISSUED A



* SPECIAL MARINE WARNING FOR...

WATERS FROM BONITA BEACH TO ENGLEWOOD FL OUT 20 TO 60 NM...

WATERS FROM ENGLEWOOD TO TARPON SPRINGS FL OUT 20 TO 60 NM...

WATERS FROM TARPON SPRINGS TO SUWANNEE RIVER FL OUT 20 TO 60 NM...

COASTAL WATERS FROM ENGLEWOOD TO TARPON SPRINGS FL OUT 20 NM...

COASTAL WATERS FROM TARPON SPRINGS TO SUWANNEE RIVER FL OUT 20

NM...

INCLUDING ANCLOTE KEY...ARIPEKA...BAYPORT...CLEARWATER BEACH...

DUNEDIN...INDIAN ROCKS BEACH...JOHNS PASS...OZELLO...PASS-A-GRILLE

CHANNEL...PORT RICHEY AND SAINT PETE BEACH...



* UNTIL 1130 PM EDT



* AT 1021 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A

LINE OF THUNDERSTORMS...PRODUCING STRONG WINDS 34 KNOTS OR

GREATER... FROM 30 NM NORTHWEST OF ANCLOTE KEY TO 53 NM SOUTHWEST

OF M13 REEF...OR FROM 30 NM NORTHWEST OF ANCLOTE KEY TO 23 NM WEST

OF INDIAN ROCKS BEACH..MOVING EAST AT 30 KNOTS.
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
Quoting BrickellBreeze:
Squall Line looks like it is intensifying.
Quoting BrickellBreeze:
Squall Line looks like it is intensifying.


It does right now. It is also starting to bow out which could mean some pretty good straight line winds. However, these storms tend to weaken right before they hit the coast (just like we saw earlier today). Let's see if the dynamics are right for the line to hold together.
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1182. nigel20
Quoting washingtonian115:
I still cry when I look at that pick.Those peoples lives just ruined and gone just like that.The people who were affected/witnessed Ike will surly not forget that storm for a looong time.I know i won't...

Agreed
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Patrap: Pitcher Born on 21st of December Throws 21st Perfect Game In MLB History on the 21st of April
1048 skook: Random numbers, please stay on topic, with all the inclement weather happening.

I've seen very little on the topic of blog2007: ClimateChange and local climate change.
(sotto*voce) talk about folks bein' contrarian...

Instead folks have been goin' gaga over possible weather that a few years^ago would have been regarded in Florida as expectable&unexciting as the possibility of rainfall in SouthernCalifornia.
And like SoCal TVweather shows lookin' at rainfall, it's been all STORM WATCH 2012 in here.

* Considering what happens on topic-blogs that mention neither GlobalWarming nor ClimateChange
^ ie pre(obvious)ClimateChange

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Quoting FLWaterFront:


That squall line may not even be so small anymore, Reed. I know though that you are trying to be cautious.

But you know what? Caution or no, this is really an unusual situation for this part of the US. Just for one thing, having such a big U/L low in conjunction with a surface low and a rapidly developing MCS system is very rare in Florida.

As a result, we really don't know exactly what to expect, but the mets are getting more and more concerned, though restrained, as usual.



The one fortunate thing is total energy available for these storms will be limited because early activity. If we had heating all day we would be talking about a scary severe threat. The SPC notes that while intense storms are headed towards Tampa Bay, its hard to say if there will be any severe winds making it to the surface, the upper low is producing elevated instability but the surface is still a bit sketchy.

We shall see, recent frames suggest the line has weakened slightly, probably due to more stable air near the coast, we'll see what happens. I'm not sure if strong storms will hold across the state though, its very stable in the eastern 2/3 of Florida.


One thing to note is there will be a boost of energy moving in from west overnight in the form of a vort max embedded in the main vort center of the low will rotate east across the gulf overnight, I'm not sure if its affecting the MCS or not yet though, we'll watch it and see if it ramps back up, it's not looking quite as strong as last hour.
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Quoting reedzone:


Just look at the radar and see for yourself, Cluster of storms organizing into a small squall line. However, I believe more storms will be forming south of that cluster as well, thus creating a longer squall line, as forecast.


That squall line may not even be so small anymore, Reed. I know though that you are trying to be cautious.

But you know what? Caution or no, this is really an unusual situation for this part of the US. Just for one thing, having such a big U/L low in conjunction with a surface low and a rapidly developing MCS system is very rare in Florida.

As a result, we really don't know exactly what to expect, but the mets are getting more and more concerned, though restrained, as usual.
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Meso Discussion
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If you switch to Key West radar you'll see that the line extends all the way down almost to Key West, although the southern portion is more discrete cells as opposed to a solid line. However that line is filling in.
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It is currently snowing in northeast Minnesota. Areas not too far to the southwest dealt with Severe Weather, including funnel clouds/tornadoes earlier this afternoon.

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MESOSCALE DISCUSSION 0579
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
0910 PM CDT SAT APR 21 2012

AREAS AFFECTED...WRN PORTIONS OF THE CNTRL AND SRN FL PENINSULA

CONCERNING...SEVERE POTENTIAL...WATCH POSSIBLE

VALID 220210Z - 220315Z

A STRONG TO LOWER END SEVERE STRAIGHT-LINE WIND GUST RISK MAY MOVE
ONSHORE NEAR THE TAMPA/ST. PETE METRO IN A FEW HOURS. A POTENTIALLY
GREATER SEVERE THREAT MAY EVOLVE FARTHER S WHERE A MORE UNSTABLE
AIRMASS MAY DEVELOP LATER THIS EVENING AND POSE AN ISOLD DMGG WIND
AND PERHAPS ISOLD TORNADO THREAT CONTINGENT LARGELY UPON SUPERCELL
DEVELOPMENT. CONVECTIVE TRENDS WILL CONTINUE TO BE MONITORED.

LATEST SURFACE/RADAR MESOANALYSIS PLACES AN INTENSIFYING QLCS 40 MI
W OF PINELLAS COUNTY MOVING TOWARDS THE COAST AS TEMPS HOLD STEADY
NEAR 70 DEG F NEAR THE COASTLINE. WATER VAPOR IMAGERY SHOWS A
POWERFUL UPPER TROUGH/ATTENDANT VORT MAX MOVING ENEWD ACROSS THE ERN
GULF -- AND FORCING FOR ASCENT ATTENDANT TO THIS FEATURE WILL LIKELY
CONTINUE TO AID MAINTAINING UPDRAFT VIGOR FOR THE QLCS THE NEXT FEW
HOURS. WITH THAT STATED...CONSIDERABLE CONVECTIVE OVERTURNING OVER
THE REGION DURING THE PAST 24 HRS HAS LIMITED THE DEGREE OF
INSTABILITY VIA MARGINAL LAPSE RATES DESPITE MID 60S DEWPOINTS /REF.
00Z TBW RAOB/. FARTHER S...THERE IS HIGHER










CONFIDENCE THAT SLIGHTLY
GREATER MLCAPE /400-800 J/KG/ WILL DEVELOP AS THE AIRMASS CONTINUES
TO RECOVER. ADDITIONALLY...STRENGTHENING WIND PROFILES OWING TO THE
APPROACH OF THE UPPER TROUGH AND AN INCREASING SWLY LLJ /35 KTS/ BY
06Z MAY LEAD TO GREATER POTENTIAL FOR ISOLD UPDRAFT ROTATION AND
POSSIBLE WIND DAMAGE AND TORNADO RISKS.

..SMITH.. 04/22/2012


ATTN...WFO...MFL...MLB...KEY...TBW...

LAT...LON 25648193 27128285 28218303 28708234 28628167 27808114
25788077 24768118 24648164 25648193
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Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31460
Quoting nigel20:
Looking back at a couple pics from hurricane IKe and I really think the that storm surge should be a factor when rating hurricane categories
I still cry when I look at that pick.Those peoples lives just ruined and gone just like that.The people who were affected/witnessed Ike will surly not forget that storm for a looong time.I know i won't...
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Quoting reedzone:


Just look at the radar and see for yourself, Cluster of storms organizing into a small squall line. However, I believe more storms will be forming south of that cluster as well, thus creating a longer squall line, as forecast.



Also thunderstorms are filling in the low center as well, so there will be the squall line and then the low center with cells scattered about, the biggest tornado potential will be with individual cells of course. I'm not seeing any super cells yet though, just strong thunderstorm cells.
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Squall Line looks like it is intensifying.
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Quoting reedzone:


Just look at the radar and see for yourself, Cluster of storms organizing into a small squall line. However, I believe more storms will be forming south of that cluster as well, thus creating a longer squall line, as forecast.


meh...im not letting my guard down but after this afternoon, im not getting my hopes up either. It rained for 20 minutes here in my area of Tampa. (Town n Country) apparently it was supposed to be much worse. I saw the radar but I'll check again before I go to bed to be sure. thanks so much for responding. I think I am just getting tired of all the news stations hyping things up for no reason. Thank YOU so much for responding to my question.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.